The is one of the world’s most easily recognized and loved flowers. The meanings of tulips coupled with the immediately identifiable shape of their colorful blooms make them a comfortable flower choice. They are not too elegant, too romantic, too big, too small, or too bright; the tulip is always just right. They are like a favorite pair of jeans or your mom’s fresh-baked cookies in that the meanings of tulips express genuine coziness and comfort in all of the right ways.
The tulip originated centuries ago in Persia and Turkey, where it played a significant role in the art and culture of the time. Most likely commenting on the Turkish tradition of wearing tulips in one’s turban, Europeans mistakenly gave tulips their name, which comes from the Persian word meaning turban. As Europeans began taking to tulips, the flower’s popularity spread quickly, particularly in the Netherlands where a phenomenon dubbed tulip mania set in at one point during the 17th century. Tulips became so highly-prized that prices were sent soaring and markets crashing. Tulips are now grown throughout the world, but people still identify cultivated varieties as “Dutch tulips.”
The meaning of tulips is generally perfect love. Like many flowers, different colors of tulips also often carry their own significance. Red tulips are most strongly associated with true love, while purple symbolizes royalty. The meaning of yellow tulips has evolved somewhat, from once representing hopeless love to now being a common expression for cheerful thoughts and sunshine. White tulips are used to claim worthiness or to send a message of forgiveness. Variegated tulips, once among the most popular varieties due to their striking color patterns, represent beautiful eyes.
With all of the sentiments and meanings of tulips, it’s not surprising that their popularity continues to endure. The wide range of colors and varieties available allows them to be used for many occasions. In addition to being a favorite for cut flower arrangements, tulips can also be given as a potted plant. The growing and caring for of tulip bulb gardens and plants is a rewarding pastime for many flower lovers. As one of the world’s most beloved flowers, a gift of tulips is a pure delight, enchanting in its beauty and simplicity.